The Great Garlic Seed Excursion… How to do it Right!
Garlic is a unique plant because it can reproduce in three different ways, from seeds through sexual production, from bulb division and from the top sets which are both asexual methods. Planting “garlic seed” is the most difficult approach to growing garlic, but it has its advantages. Primarily it increases diversity in the plants and can improve adaptation. Starting with seeds improves the plants ability to adapt to changes in the environment and can increase the nutritional yield of the plant. Over time the viability of the garlic plant is strong and more robust than through the asexual reproduction method of using garlic cloves instead of seeds.
Most people grow starting from garlic cloves which is referred to as asexual reproduction. This is the simplest way to grow fresh garlic and has some advantages, but it has some downside. The advantages are simplicity, ease of use, and uniformity from one harvest to another. If you want a fast easy method of growing garlic this is simply the best way to do it. It will also yield approximately the same size, shape, and flavor of garlic. Unfortunately, over-time this method can cause undesirable genetic mutations. It can even put the plant at risk of extinction. That particular strain at least.
Garlic does not often create seeds. This is one of the difficulties in trying this method. Even many strains in the wild reproduce through asexual methods. When a garlic plant does create seeds they generally look tiny and black, similar to onion seeds.
- Soaking garlic seeds
Soaking garlic seeds is a vital part of preparation for planting. This step will help to get rid of any fungi or insects that may be attached to the seeds. It will require that you soak some of the garlic seeds in baking soda, liquid seaweed, bowl, a bucket, white vinegar and warm water. Start the soaking process by separating the cloves from the bulb, one by one. This can be done using hands, because you do not want to hurt the cloves. Remove enough cloves for the areas you want to plant.
Using a large bucket, place all the items and garlic cloves together and mix well till the baking soda has completely been dissolved. Leave this mixture for a night and check the following morning. Using a slotted spoon, remove the garlic cloves and remove the skin that is already lose at this time. Using rubbing alcohol, soak the intended garlic until it is soaked thoroughly then they would be ready for planting.
- Bed preparations
Land preparations will take more time than seed preparation, but it needs to be carefully planned for. This is because the garlic being planted will require some compost that will be effective to the garlic plant in the early life after it is planted. Using a hoe, mark the line where you will be planting the garlic deepen them some few inches deep. Placing the cloves facing upwards, since the top will sprout a shoot that will lead to development of a new garlic bulb. Remember to keep the distance 4 inches apart from each other, and use a paddle hoe for covering up the garlic. Remember to label your garlic on the date it was planted for proper harvesting times. If you need to get the best result from your garlic farming, ensure that you have weeded the garlic whenever it is necessary.
If you are a new garlic farmer, you could get the clove seeds from your local nurseries, or get them from a farmer near you. This will give you a type that is most compatible with your local weather and humidity. For the garlic from the grocery store, it may not be considered as potential seeds since they may be treated to last for a longer time period. For this reason, they may turn out to be dangerous to your soil, to the extent of damaging and bringing unwanted viruses. Ensure that the scapes are cut out, to leave the flavor to the garlic beneath the ground, because this is where it is most required. From the garlic seeds that you use, do not previously refrigerate them.
If you love to grow garlic or just love to eat it, there is one thing you will eventually have to do. That's peel it. Save yourself the aggravation and watch the video of our peeling garlic trick.